Quotes & Questions - Chapter 9: Fitting Our Tools to a Small World

Perhaps the most significant effect of our new tools, though, lies in the increased leverage they give the most connected people. The tightness of a large social network comes less from increasing the number of connections that the average member of the network can support than from increasing the number of connections that the most connected people can support. (p. 225)
  • What does it mean to be connected?
  • In what ways is the more connected educator better and/or worse than the less-connected educator?
People whose networks span structural holes have early access to diverse, often contradictory, information and interpretations which gives them a good competitive advantage in delivering good ideas. People connected to groups beyond their own can expect to find themselves delivering valuable ideas, seeming to be gifted with creativity. This is not creativity born of deep intellectual ability. It is creativity as an import-export business. An idea mundane in one group can be a valuable insight in another. (quoting Ronald Burt, p. 231)
  • Why is diversity important in an academic environment?
  • Shirky, C. (2008). Here comes everybody. New York: The Penguin Press.
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